Remediating the Former Chemical Factory Lampertheim-Neuschloß
Where once the Neuschloss chemical factory produced soda, sulphuric acid, bleaching powder, hydrochloric acid and fertilisers, today is a densely populated residential area in Lampertheim in the German state of Hesse. As a legacy of the chemical factory, the ground was heavily contaminated with dioxins, furans, arsenic, lead, thallium and other heavy metals. High levels of arsenic reached the aquifer, which then transported the arsenic in a contamination plume measuring several hundred metres towards a nearby waterworks.
We supported our clients with project management and control services, providing virtually all of the planning services, from historical surveys to design and construction management and supervision of the soil and groundwater remediation. In addition, we provided all geotechnical assessments and special heavy engineering services, such as foundation, shoring and underpinning, and the creation of a geographic information system (GIS). Our support also included measuring vibrations and monitoring the protection of local residents from emissions and pollution. We also provided soil remediation planning services for the residential properties which featured complex approval matters in conjunction with public participation.
A major reason for the project’s success has been consistent implementation and honest public participation at every project planning stage.
All of the outhouses without cellars as well as perimeter barriers and gardens were demolished and rebuilt after soil remediation on 126 private properties and affected adjacent public spaces. The 10-year construction period up to 2012 saw the removal and disposal of around 190,000 tonnes of contaminated soil, including around 50 tonnes of arsenic. Work safety and resident protection were always top priority throughout the project.
Our geographic information system uses more than 200,000 analysis data points as well as the photogrammetric analysis of the current utilisation.
According to our design, the groundwater contamination has been undergoing remediation through extraction and on-site treatment of the groundwater from the contamination centre and the tip of the plume since 2003. The purified water is strictly monitored and discharged to the aquifer in compliance with the German Drinking Water Ordinance. Around 3.3 million m³ of groundwater have been treated at an hourly rate of around 32 m³ since the beginning of the remediation project.
Together with the University of Heidelberg, we tested a new method that will significantly shorten the groundwater remediation period. As part of a pilot project, we injected a phosphate solution through injection wells into the groundwater. The aim was to mobilise arsenic bound to ground sediment using the phosphate and remove it again downstream using the ongoing hydraulic measure. The results in arsenic mobilisation were highly promising.
Now, the process is being implemented on an industrial scale under our planning and with the support of the University of Heidelberg. Following the construction of new infiltration and extraction wells and the technical upgrading of the existing water treatment plant, full-scale operation is expected to commence in mid-2018.
Innovative remediation techniques have resulted in sustainable remediation results.
Did you know?
For almost 20 years, CDM Smith has been supporting the HIM GmbH in the remediation of this complex contamination site. We cover project management services (phases 1–5) according to the German Fee Structure Commission of Engineers' and Architects' Associations and Chambers (AHO) and work phases 1–9 from the German Official Scale of Fees for Services by Architects and Engineers (HOAI).